Thank you for contacting me about youth services.
Youth services and trained youth workers can have a transformational impact, especially for young people facing multiple barriers or disadvantage. It is important that all young people are given the opportunity to develop the skills, networks and resilience that can improve their life chances and support them to avoid negative pathways such as violence and crime.
I am sure you will be delighted to learn that, following the 2021 Spending Review, the Government is investing £560 million in youth services in England, including through the Youth Investment Fund and the National Citizen Service. This will provide up to 300 youth facilities targeted at areas most in need.
Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, I know my ministerial colleagues also worked hard to stabilise youth charities so that they are in strong position to deliver the outcomes envisaged for young people through the Youth Investment Fund. This included through the £15.6 million Youth Covid Support Fund which provided emergency funding specifically for youth services. This fund was part of a wider package of support for the charity sector which saw £100 million go to organisations supporting children and young people during the pandemic.
Furthermore, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has been reviewing the guidance which accompanies the statutory duty placed on Local Authorities to secure local youth services. Officials held consultations with the youth sector and young people, and ran a public call for evidence, which closed in December 2019. The conclusions of the review were delayed due to the Covid-19 pandemic and are now being considered as part of a wider review of out of school youth programmes.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.